Boom, boom … out go the lights

 

Where were you when the lights went out?

Sitting in the dark.

That was the situation for a fair number of people in Prince George last Thursday afternoon at about 2:30.

I was one of those people.

I was sitting in my apartment, working on my computer, when the lights went out, the radio stopped pumping out great tunes of the 50s, 60s and 70s, and the overhead fan ceased to turn.

My computer, however, stayed on, since it’s a laptop and has a battery backup. That confused me for a second, wondering why the computer screen was still brightly lit while everything else in the apartment was dark.

I shut the computer off, switched off a couple of other items, then opened the door and looked into the hallway.

As I suspected (since I had paid my Hydro bill), the lights in the hall were out, so I knew it wasn’t just my apartment. I called my mom, since I was going to her place for dinner, and asked if I could come by a bit early.

She said yes, so I got my snowboots and ran into my first problem. The boots have long laces which need to be restrung each time I put them on, In the darkness of the apartment, I couldn’t see the laces, so I headed up to the foyer, where I knew it would be lighter.

While I was there, I had a young lady come up from her apartment to confirm the building itself was down. I said it was, and she was actually kind of happy about that.

Turns out she had just moved in the day before, and was pretty sure she had paid all the bills that needed to be paid to get things up and running.

Power was back on in about an hour for most people, and I had time to reflect that evening on how things could have been worse.

First, the outage could have been longer. Second, it could have been a much colder day.

Third, I could have been in the situation of someone I worked with in Kamloops, who was in the middle of a shower when the power went out. That’s a difficult situation, to say the least.